Philip Seymour Hoffman is gone and I am livid at those who could have intervened


Here we go again.

We’ve lost another talented and beloved person due to addiction.  Seriously, enough is enough.  Philip Seymour Hoffman passed away Sunday, Feb. 2, in his NYC apartment due to an apparent overdose, according to the New York Daily News. Now that he’s gone, in a tragic and completely avoidable way, everyone will be highlighting his accomplishments and what a great guy he was.

I loved him in Pirate Radio.  Seriously, I think I kind of crushed on him for that performance alone.  The pot smoking playboy who was passionate about rock-n-roll was an underappreciated performance, in my opinion. We’ve watched him kill it in The Hunger Games, The Talented Mr. Ripley, and Boogie Nights. Nevertheless, he will forever be remembered as a talented man who overdosed on drugs and died alone in his apartment.

I am so sick of this particular story.

I’m writing now to all of the talented and indulgent Hollywood types:  what the hell is wrong with you? The Gods blessed you all with talent, with beauty, with success, and with every resource on this planet to help you NOT die from a f**king drug overdose.   Stop for a minute and take a look at the people around you. Are they there to help you? Where the f**k were the people who were looking out for Hoffman?

I get it, addiction sucks. But you know what?  Regular people (those without agents, assistants, and managers) must go at the addiction battle alone.  That s**t is rough.  I’ve watched friends deal with it. You guys have a virtual army of people who literally work for you! Will they really try to help you?

In all honesty, I blame the people around the talent as well as Mr. Hoffman himself.  You were so hungry for your connection to a celebrity that you were willing to set aside your own moral responsibility for personal gain. You’re cowards. At what point is it a no-no to alert the boss they might die?  At what point do you cash your paycheck and think, “Meh…he might die of an overdose, but hey…I get to go shopping!” and really think everything is okay?

Because of you, Mr. Hoffman’s family is in mourning. His three children will be without their father. His fans lost someone of whom we dearly loved.  His friends will miss him every day. Tears are falling down the faces of people who loved him in different ways because you wouldn’t tell him no.

Am I unfairly blaming his staff for his death?  Probably. However…who else knew everything about this guy if not his personal assistant, managers and agents?  Someone who’s every waking moment is responsible for a celebrity’s well-being and daily schedule should know if drugs were a problem. Someone had to get them for him. He died with the needle in his arm after shooting up heroine. Did he score that stuff on his own? If you believe he did, you’re not living in reality. But hey…I’m sure there was money in it for someone.

We can’t claim we, as a society, are unaware of the troubles that plague celebrities.  We can’t claim we’re not responsible for some of them either.  Their level of stress and general distrust must run very deep.  They don’t have a regular life and our ridiculous obsession with their every move has to create an atmosphere of paranoia. We aren’t ignorant to the problem.  Hell, there’re television shows about celebrities in rehab, for crying out loud!  We’re turning a blind eye to the needs of people of whom we’ve placed on a pedestal. Maybe claiming ignorance would have flown thirty or forty years ago but not now. This celebrity culture we live in is dysfunctional and it is costing us dearly.

Yeah, I’m pretty pissed that I can’t look forward to anymore movies with one of my favorite actors in it. I’m pissed for his kids and his family. I’m pissed for his friends. I’m pissed at him for doing the drugs. I’m really pissed at the people who watched this train wreck happen and did nothing.

We’ll hear about how awesome he was (he really was) and we’ll hear how tragic it is to add his name to the already too long list of dead celebrities due to addiction. More of us need to speak up about our anger. Other celebrities need to speak up too.

But mostly….all of the agents, managers, and personal assistants need to start speaking up and stop enabling.  I’m so sad you’re gone, Mr. Hoffman. I’ll miss your ability to delight and surprise me in every project you worked on. I’m sad but I’m angry too. I’m so sick of this happening. It’s such a waste.

Enough is enough.

About Mel Massey

Mel Massey
Mel Massey is the author of The Earth's Magick Series (Solstice Publishing). She's a political junky and a professional smartass. Mel can be found tweeting nonsense or having hilarious discussions with readers on Facebook. Occasionally, she leaves those particular vices and writes about magick, witches, monsters and all the lovely dark things lurking in the shadows. Visit for more details.


  1. He did not set out to die! He was supposed to pick up his kids & probably forgot, or ran late & felt awful; what do addicts do with their pain? They use. He was a very humble and kind man, from all I’ve read over the years. Send praise of what he left behind & peace, not anger. Help someone you know who is an addict or alcoholic to know they are loved. Only love heals.

  2. I feel the anger. I will say though that helping an addict is not only hard but almost impossible unless they want the help. I do agree that too many people turn a blind eye, not only to this plight but also the suffering around the world. Over the next few days people will mourn the way they can. For some it will be looking at the great legacy he left behind. For others it will be anger and blame. Neither form is wrong. What we cannot do is continue to not learn from these mistakes. So I would suggest we take a look at ourselves and those around us and try to see if there is some way in which we can help alleviate someones burdens. Even just a little. That’s what I would like to take away from this tragedy.

  3. I have to agree with some of the points you made. His death would be heartbreaking enough for me on a regular day because I just adore him and his work. However, it resonates even more on this day because I am personally struggling with the effects of addiction in my own life right now– not my own struggle but that of a loved one. Because of dealing with that, Philip Seymour Hoffnan’s death really struck a chord with me on so many levels and this article really brings to light a lot of prevalent issues in the media today concerning substance abuse. It has become so commonplace that it isn’t even frowned upon anymore, its just expected. And I truly hate that because I have seen how horrible it is for someone’s life and for their loved ones. I agree with the points you made about taking action and doing the hardest thing: saying no. It is next to impossible, (especially when you get paid to say yes), but it can be the turning point in someone’s life that could keep tragedies like this from happening. At the end of the day, however, if someone is an addict there is no way for them to ever be able to completely stop is on their own accord. Hoffman did just that and was sober for almost 25 years before he started using again. Just goes to show how deeply addiction can grip you. Rest in peace, you brilliant man.

  4. Stop looking for a place for blame! He’s dead. You know how many people die from drugs, alcohol or even food? You can fall out of a window to your death, you think the people in the room with you are to blame for what your dumbass did? He was a grown man and didn’t need a babysitter. What if he wanted to die? It’s been done before.

  5. Samantha, you missed the point completely. People do die from tragic accidents, but people with addiction can have interventions, people who actually care, who can try to help them. A perfect example of this is Johnny Cash.

  6. i think that pretty much sums up the situation…a good many more will follow in his steps to leave earthly connections the same way assisted by those around him, the sheep who will do ANYTHING for a star

  7. Samantha, you missed the point completely. People do die from tragic accidents, but people with addiction can have interventions, people who actually care, who can try to help them. A perfect example of this is Johnny Cash.

  8. Lee Robinson

    I think it’s ridiculous to assume that the blame for this man’s death rests on the shoulder of his “minders”. An addict is an addict and will find a way to their addiction no matter who is there. Perhaps you/we should be more introspective. After all, as citizenry we allow the government to keep this drug illegal which forces those that are addicted to it to gamble with their lives every time they use. But you don’t seem particularly concerned with the countless people who overdose on heroin every day; it’s just anger because you have been deprived of entertainment. I know this is a site about pop culture, but this just seems like tawdry star worship. Why not write an article about THAT form of cultural addiction.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.